A 2016 sleep health survey completed on Australian adults found that loud snoring is reported by 24% of men and 17% of women. Tooth grinding or Bruxism affects roughly 5% of Australians severely and many others intermittently. We are regularly asked; are these concerns serious? Will this impact my teeth and health? What causes it? And how can I prevent it from happening? So, I would like to take the opportunity to answer these questions for you now.
1.What causes a person to grind and/or snore?
Both grinding and snoring can be a sign of more serious issues. Medical professionals are not entirely sure what specifically causes grinding or Bruxism but conclude it can be due to psychological, physical and genetic factors. Stress, age, family history, some disorders, medications and substance use can all cause a person to suffer from Bruxism, to varying degrees, both when they are awake and when they are sleeping. Snoring on the other hand has far more specific causes. The anatomy of your mouth and sinuses, alcohol consumption, allergies, respiratory illness and weight can all cause a person to snore.
2. Is grinding and snoring a serious issue?
Both grinding and snoring can be a sign of something more serious going on. Grinding alone can cause permanent damage to your teeth and jaw but as mentioned above, can be a sign of psychological, physical and genetic issues. Snoring is often a sign of a condition called obstructive sleep apnea. This condition raises the risk for diabetes, obesity, hypertension, stroke, heart attack and other cardiovascular problems, so dealing with it early is ideal for your ongoing good health.
3. Will grinding and snoring affect your oral and overall health?
Long story short… YES! Whether it be putting a strain on your relationship, breaking teeth, or disturbing your sleep, the effect of these issues on your overall health can be significant if not dealt with properly and in good time.
4. How can you prevent nightly grinding and snoring?
The first step to preventing the issue from continuing is correct diagnoses of the cause. Once this has been achieved then a treatment plan can be established with the relevant medical professionals. At Westside Dentistry we offer treatment options for both grinding and snoring. We work with you to make it as easy and successful as possible.
Grinding and snoring is a significant health concern, often ignored and left untreated for too long. With risks clearly laid out the obvious choice is to deal with the issue promptly, to minimise the long-term effects and maintain your good health.